Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 29th Aug 2006 21:24 UTC
Windows Microsoft is breathing more life into older versions of its products by offering businesses extended coverage for fixing security problems and bugs. Large companies running old favorites Windows NT 4.0, Exchange Server 5.5 and Windows XP Service Pack 1 can expect at least three more years of support from Microsoft after it decided to update the Custom Support Agreement program. There is even the suggestion support will go beyond three years.
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Probably a good thing
by flanque on Tue 29th Aug 2006 22:12 UTC
flanque
Member since:
2005-12-15

Since many organisations don't have the compatibility with XP SP2 that they need, it's hard to justify them being denied access to security updates.

That being said, XP SP2 should be well and truely on the to-do list by now.

Reply Score: 5

wow
by deanlinkous on Tue 29th Aug 2006 22:40 UTC
deanlinkous
Member since:
2006-06-19

NT4 still and exchange 5.5.... WOW
I wonder if MS realized companies aren't upgrading so this is one way to keep them as customers. Interesting move!

Reply Score: 5

RE: wow
by rm6990 on Tue 29th Aug 2006 22:50 UTC in reply to "wow"
rm6990 Member since:
2005-07-04

Why fix something that isn't broken? NT4 and Exchange 5.5 still work for a lot of organizations. Maybe Microsoft fears the end of support forcing these companies to upgrade may present to them the option of both Vista and Longhorn, or Linux (or OS X of course)....

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: wow
by DittoBox on Tue 29th Aug 2006 23:48 UTC in reply to "RE: wow"
DittoBox Member since:
2005-07-08

Good point. Doubly so if these companies were looking at upgrading to the 2007 versions of these products, which are far different from 5.5/NT4. They're even a lot different from the 2003 and 2000 editions.

On a side note, does anyone find using SP1 anywhere near an internet connection a little scary, considering the reports of virus infection at around the 15 minute mark? Of course having a good hardware firewall that doesn't let anything through is a great idea, but why the hastle? SP2 is well tested and has been deployed successfully just about everywhere. Not to mention it's a lot safer.

Are there really vendors who have software they refuse to update to be SP2 compatible? Furthermore what kind of companies trust their mission critical tasks to software from vendors like this? Just makes bad business sense to me...then again I'm no bean counter.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: wow
by kaiwai on Wed 30th Aug 2006 04:21 UTC in reply to "RE: wow"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Or that they've simply sat down with customers and asked, "why haven't you moved', and they've found that Windows 2000 and Windows 2003 didn't provide a compelling enough case for upgrading.

With that being said, however, if I were Microsoft, I'd offer *insanely* deep discounts to these organisations, simply to get them moving up to the next version.

Reply Score: 3

either way
by nivenh on Wed 30th Aug 2006 02:22 UTC
nivenh
Member since:
2005-07-06

i wish they would make up their minds. it seems like every few months, the EOL date changes on something Microsoft makes.

Reply Score: 1

Exactly!
by deanlinkous on Wed 30th Aug 2006 02:26 UTC
deanlinkous
Member since:
2006-06-19

Exactly. It finally hit them that no support means no contact and basically means they couldn't count someone as a customer. I think it was finally obvious some customers were not going to upgrade.

I think where I use to work finally did upgrade but until a year or so ago we still used NT4. It did everything we needed it to do so why not.

As far as SP2, I do not care for it at all. Seems to use more resources and mess with too many things. SP1 for me...at home anyway. ;)

Reply Score: 1

Running scared...
by doctorsuse on Wed 30th Aug 2006 03:02 UTC
doctorsuse
Member since:
2006-08-30

Perhaps the MSFT management, busily chopping off support for security-plagued products and sliding in new and very pricey alternatives requiring new hardware, were tapped on the shoulder by their marketing people. They may have turned to see a very tall wave with the letters LINUX on it, poised to quench the thirst of the customers being left high and dry by EOL products. Linux is the talk of the town right now - just have a look at how many articles discussing unreleased products like vista also talk about Linux, OpenOffice, and the loads of cash to be saved and security/support benefits that can be realized by switching to open source.

Or maybe it is just corporate philanthropism and good will at work.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Running scared...
by deanlinkous on Wed 30th Aug 2006 03:49 UTC in reply to "Running scared..."
deanlinkous Member since:
2006-06-19

"Or maybe it is just corporate philanthropism and good will at work."

Yeaaaa.... thats the ticket ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Running scared...
by Soulbender on Wed 30th Aug 2006 04:05 UTC in reply to "Running scared..."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

"Or maybe it is just corporate philanthropism and good will at work."

And maybe the Pope is Buddhist.

Reply Score: 4

wonderful!!
by roger64 on Wed 30th Aug 2006 06:16 UTC
roger64
Member since:
2006-08-15

three more years in paradise ....;-)

Reply Score: 2

Vista is getting late ...
by deb2006 on Wed 30th Aug 2006 08:33 UTC
deb2006
Member since:
2006-06-26

... and so MS has to do "something". Well, they are doing "something" ;)

Reply Score: 3

NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS
by Ford Prefect on Wed 30th Aug 2006 08:56 UTC
Ford Prefect
Member since:
2006-01-16

It's just the sad truth that no successor could dominate it both in robustness, speed and bloat factor.

It's also the only Windows (next to '95, which sucked) without IE4 and higher...

Reply Score: 2

RE: NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS
by DevL on Wed 30th Aug 2006 11:40 UTC in reply to "NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS"
DevL Member since:
2005-07-06

I'd say that the "sweet spot" (if there is such a thing reagarding Windows) in terms of functionality, speed, and bloat factor was Windows 2000.

Changing the hardware configuration on an NT4 system usually meant reinstalling in my experience.

Reply Score: 1

RE: NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS
by aGNUstic on Wed 30th Aug 2006 12:50 UTC in reply to "NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS"
aGNUstic Member since:
2005-07-28

"It's also the only Windows (next to '95, which sucked) without IE4 and higher..."

Personally, I beleve there was a lot of SMB / corporate anger in having to be `forced` into upgrading when they didn't need to.

NT4, while a pain in the ass, is simple and it works. The only reason most companies had to migrate to 2k and 2k3 server was Extra Change server which needs AD.

Nice trick to bleed, yes, I said bleed, funds from businesses.

It's nice, used in a very hacknied sense, to see MicroWaste support the SMBs and corporations that support them.

Reply Score: 1

Confidence in Vista?
by bolomkxxviii on Wed 30th Aug 2006 10:58 UTC
bolomkxxviii
Member since:
2006-05-19

I guess they don't want to try to push everyone into Vista anytime soon. Perhaps they feel if they used too much force some IT shops would try alternatives.

Reply Score: 1

RE: NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS
by dvhh on Wed 30th Aug 2006 14:57 UTC
dvhh
Member since:
2006-03-20

while NT4 best fit SMB needs, windows 2000 was a good upgrade to the NT kernel with good PnP support and nice APIs.
NT(3.51 & 4) was really a neat a simple OS, with multiple processor support ( Alpha, Power PC ) and a good break away from DOS while keep a good compatibility layer with windows.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS
by rcsteiner on Wed 30th Aug 2006 16:39 UTC in reply to "RE: NT4 SP5 was MSFT's best OS"
rcsteiner Member since:
2005-07-12

NT was a good break away from DOS limitations, and it moved to a much better core architecture, but it was a bad break away from DOS in terms of API support.

NT's VDMs are a joke. Microsoft could have done a much better job -- I would have paid double the price for a version of Windows NT that had OS/2-style VDMs.

As it is, I simply used OS/2 instead of NT. I had to in order for my DOS stuff to work properly...

Reply Score: 1

Overstretched?
by twenex on Wed 30th Aug 2006 15:34 UTC
twenex
Member since:
2006-04-21

Will having to support more and more legacy products (not to mention releasing more and more for free) overstretch Microsoft?

Reply Score: 1

RE: Overstretched?
by deanlinkous on Wed 30th Aug 2006 15:54 UTC in reply to "Overstretched?"
deanlinkous Member since:
2006-06-19

Not to mention switching from passport to LiveID as well as overhauling a lot of the msn site and services and so forth. My wife has a MyMSN account which is actually a LiveID account with seems to have subaccounts for each of the groups she is in. It is a big mess!

I was actually talking to her about microsoft trying to keep up and do too much stuff and I wonder if that is why everything is a mess and delayed.

Plus working on updates, the new explorer, and so forth. I honestly wonder.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Overstretched?
by twenex on Wed 30th Aug 2006 17:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Overstretched?"
twenex Member since:
2006-04-21

While we're indulging in crystal-ball gazing and conspiracy theories, what about Vista? Is *another* delay on the cards?

Reply Score: 1

time for hardware upgrades
by Adurbe on Wed 30th Aug 2006 16:47 UTC
Adurbe
Member since:
2005-07-06

with the high requirements of vista microsoft are gving more time for companies to upgrade their hardware.. which, of course, will come with vista pre-installed ;-)

Reply Score: 1

I think its good
by judgen on Wed 30th Aug 2006 17:01 UTC
judgen
Member since:
2006-07-12

the only thing that keeps me from using NT4 instead of any other ms os (i mainly use BeOS and linux otherwise) is that the only reason i use windows is to play games and use unsupported pheripals. As usb does not work very well in nt4 and directx is now so old (dx7 is the latest for nt4) that ist practically unusable. Well if it works for you, why change, but as a personal computing os its just a bit outdated.

Reply Score: 1

RE: I think its good
by Zoidberg on Wed 30th Aug 2006 20:39 UTC in reply to "I think its good"
Zoidberg Member since:
2006-02-11

I may be mistaken but I believe DirectX 3 is the last version for NT4, included in the last service pack.

Reply Score: 1

I'm a Mac Zealot
by thavith_osn on Wed 30th Aug 2006 21:51 UTC
thavith_osn
Member since:
2005-07-11

So I think this is......

Very cool!!!

Reply Score: 1